Three Houses: 4th Famitsu Article (Nightcrawlers, Tea Parties and Offerings for Saints)

E3 might have come and gone, but Three Houses news continues to flow! Today, the latest issue of Famitsu was released, with a new 8-page article discussing the time skip, new villains, more activities and gameplay elements.

Firstly, the time skip information is basically the stuff we know from E3. The first half of the game focuses on the academy, then the second half focuses on a huge war involving the 3 nations, 5 years later. At this point in time, the 3 house leaders lead their respective nations.

Note: Special thanks to Nintendo Everything for the images!

What we weren’t certain of before is that the monastery will still play a pivotal role in the second half, called the “war phase”. You’ll still progress through the calendar and you can still train your students, explore the monastery etc. Each chapter lasts a month, as before. But the stakes are higher.

Two screenshots were shown of the academy during the war phase.

The first one seems to depict an older Felix. As you can see, the protagonist has already changed their hair colour. Currently, it’s the 11th of the 1st month, the Harvest Season. The backdrop is the monastery’s cathedral. The player’s Professor Level is C by this point (so about halfway there) and they have 5 activity points to spend.

A new option is available at the top: Advanced Training, which costs 1 activity point in exploring. According to Famitsu, you can receive training from anyone with skill levels higher than yours. So a more flexible version of Faculty Training for students. The other options are gift, lost item and invite to tea (more on this later).

The second screenshot shows the player training a female student, who’s definitely an older Bernadetta. She has strengths in lance and bow as you’d expect. Besides that, she’s weak in Sword, Axe and Fighting. There’s also a Professor Expertise in Sword, Fighting, Faith and Authority. Of note, she receives +1 exp from a Divine Cethlenn statue (will be explained later).

Moving on, we’re shown three “new” characters, although we’ve briefly seen them in earlier trailers. These three are part of a mysterious group called the “Nightcrawlers” or something to that effect–and they are apparently involved with the war that breaks out. That’s all we know, as their motives are a complete mystery. But given they look evil and act in the shadows, it’s hard not to see them as villains.

Correction: The Flame Emperor and Death Knight are not part of this group. Thanks to Druplesnubb for pointing this out.

Thales

Solon and Cronje’s leader and an important figure within the Nightcrawlers. In order to carry out his master plan, he acts in the shadows of Fódlan.

He’s the guy with white eyes seen invoking a mysterious magic circle.

Solon

A man with the appearance of a mage. Suitable for his appearance, he uses cunning schemes and tricks. A highly dangerous individual.

He’s the man with black eyes with the red background behind him. It’s also possible that he’s the person strangling(?) somebody in this scene.

Cronje

One of the Nightcrawlers. She looks like a happy young woman, but she acts like a child and exhibits a brutal disposition.

Despite being a Nightcrawler, she seems to be on the receiving end of Solon. If you look at her new screenshot, the scenery matches with this scene, where a woman is being strangled(?). Did she fail in her task and had to be disposed?

On to happier things! The next few pages are all about the academy.

This was touched in Gamespot’s preview as well as Treehouse Live, but it’s possible to recruit students from other houses. However, you must meet certain stat and skill level requirements. Also you cannot recruit house leaders and certain students. Leonie is definitely fair game though! Any students you recruit may also join you during the war phase.

When exploring, you can give gifts to students you encounter. Gifts can be purchased from the market, grown from the greenhouse etc. If you give a student a gift that they like, you can gain support points. Also, if the student is in your house, their Motivation will increase. Sadly, the screenshots are too small to see the details, but it appears you can find Messenger Owl’s Feathers on the floor…

Before we move onto the other activities, here are some new personal abilities and crests for the 8 characters previously revealed by the official site/Twitter account (and Leonie who’s yet to be profiled)!

Caspar

  • Personal Ability: Quarreler – Adjacent foes receive Avoid -10 during combat
  • Crest: None

Linhardt

  • Personal Ability: Doze Off – If unit waits without performing an action, restores 10% HP
  • Crest: Minor Crest of Cethlenn (a saint not an Elite)

Petra

  • Personal Ability: Hunter’s Law – When foe has less than 50% HP, Critical rate +20
  • Crest: None

Annette

  • Personal Ability: Hard Worker – When Rally command is used on ally, grants Strength +4
  • Crest: Minor Crest of Dominique (one of the 10 Elites)

Sylvain

  • Personal Ability: Ladies’ Man- When adjacent to a female ally, damage dealt to foe +2, damage received from foe -2
  • Crest: Minor Crest of Gautier (one of the 10 Elites)

Ingrid

  • Personal Ability: Lady Knight – When using a Gambit, Might +3 and Hit Rate +5
  • Crest: Minor Crest of Daphnel (one of the 10 Elites)

Ignatz

  • Personal Ability: Keen Observation – Hit rate +20
  • Crest: None

Marianne

  • Personal Ability: Animal Lover – When adjacent to a horseback or flying ally, restores 20% HP at the start of the turn
  • Crest: Minor Crest of ??? (literally; also the same as the crest on Edelgard’s relic axe).

Leonie

The daughter of a hunter, who’s training to become a money-making mercenary. She’s the protagonist’s father’s self-proclaimed top student.

  • Personal Ability: Hates to Lose – When adjacent to a male ally, damage dealt to foe +2, damage received from foe -2
  • Crest: None

At this point, I believe we know all of the 10 Elites (and their descendents). They are Fraldarius (Felix), Blaiddyd (Dimitri), Gloucester (Lorenz), Goneril (Hilda), Charon (Lysithea), Riegan (Claude), Lamine (Mercedes), Dominique (Annette), Gautier (Sylvain) and Daphel (Ingrid).

When exploring the monastery, you may find blue sparkles on the floor, indicating a lost item. If you can correctly identify its owner, by checking the item’s details, you can earn support points and motivation. In the example, the protagonist has found a Fine Arts Book. Hmm, I wonder who this could belong to? Of course, Ignatz, since he loves art!

During weekends and when it’s a character’s birthday, you can invite characters for a tea party. First, you choose from a selection of tea leaves, then the conversation begins in earnest. You’ll want to choose topics that the character is interested in. But you’ll need to act fast, as you’re timed! If successful, it seems you’ll gain support points and both characters will increase their Charm stat.

At a tea party, even if your conversation ends up going nowhere, don’t worry as support points won’t be deducted. Also, if the conversation is a success, you’ll enter a “free time” state, where you can give a gift and, er, literally get closer to the other person.

While exploring the monastery, one of the key places you can visit is the Cathedral. Here, you can attend Choir Practice to boost Faith skill levels for everyone involved, your own Authority skill level and earn support points. Also, you can answer anonymous letters posted to an Advice Box to earn support points. Both of these were covered in Treehouse Live.

There’s also a third thing you can do. Located in the cathedral are four massive saint statues, each dedicated to one of the four divine saints of Fódlan. Here, you can provide offerings in the form of Renown earned via quests and fighting. Each statue functions as an individual reward box. Below are the rewards you can redeem.

Notes:

  • Points are cumulative, so you only need 10,000 to clear out a box.
  • The skill level bonuses are additional experience points when instructing.

Divine Cichol Statue

Reward Req. Points
Axe +1 200
Authority +1 500
Experience +5% 1000
Flying +2 2000
Divine Pulse +1 3000
Axe +2 4000
Authority +2 5000
Experience +10% 7500
Strength and Speed cap +5 10000

Divine Cethlenn Statue

Reward Req. Points
Lance +1 200
Faith +1 500
Experience +5% 1000
Class Mastery +1 2000
Divine Pulse +1 3000
Lance +2 4000
Faith +2 5000
Experience +10% 7500
Luck and Charm cap +5 10000

Divine Macuil Statue

Reward Req. Points
Sword +1 200
Reason +1 500
Experience +5% 1000
Riding +2 2000
Divine Pulse +1 3000
Sword +2 4000
Reason +2 5000
Experience +10% 7500
Magic and Dexterity cap +5 10000

Divine Indech Statue

Reward Req. Points
Bow +1 200
Fighting +1 500
Experience +5% 1000
Heavy Armor +2 2000
Divine Pulse +1 3000
Bow +2 4000
Fighting +2 5000
Experience +10% 7500
Defence and Resistance cap +5 10000

You may have noticed that there are students with crests belonging to three of the four saints: Bernadetta (Indech), Linhardt (Cethlenn) and Ferdinand (Cichol). This might be important…

The market is the place to stock up on various necessities! Here, you can find the usual armoury and vendor, plus the Knights’ Guild for all your battalion needs. In addition, there are various traveling merchants selling their wares. These include items that can be used to participate in weekend activities. Some of their items have limited stock.

Anna, the series’s mysterious merchant makes an appearance! In this game, after you clear certain quest(s), she will set up a secret shop in the market. There, you can expect to purchase rare goods from her!

There’s another facility that you’ll want to make use of: the smithy. As your characters fight, their weapons will naturally degrade–more so if they expend Combat Arts. Fortunately, for a fee and the corresponding materials, the smithy will happily repair your weapons! Any weapons that break will enter a drastically weakened state, so you don’t need to worry about them vanishing.

Furthermore, you can use smithing stones (from group tasks etc.) to forge weapons into stronger (+) versions. Doing so can increase the weapon’s maximum uses, Might and Hit rate, etc. However, you must have a high enough Professor Level to forge better weapons. Forging a Steel Lance+ requires a D+ Professor Level. Also it seems one weapon can have multiple enhanced options (up to four).

On to the last two pages, which yesterday’s preview image is from. I wonder how much I managed to guess right?

Firstly, a quick recap on Combat Arts. These are special attacks you can trigger during your own phase, learned by increasing your skill levels. There are different Combat Arts for each weapon type. Like Echoes, they cannot trigger follow up attacks. Unlike Echoes, they are not tied to specific weapons and now cost extra weapon durability instead of HP.

Also, magic spells can be learned just like Combat Arts, by raising your Reason and Faith skill levels.

Wrath Strike is the basic Sword Combat Art. It costs 3 durability and boosts Might by 5 and Hit rate by 10. A pretty straightforward attack if you’re just shy of one-shotting a foe.

Back Blow seems to be the basic Gauntlet Combat Art. It also costs 3 durability, but raises Might by 6, Hit rate by 10 and Avoid by 30. After combat, the user moves 1 square away, like Hit and Run in Heroes. However it won’t trigger consecutive hits like normal Gauntlet attacks do.

Helm Splitter is the second Axe Combat Art. It costs 3 durability and boosts Might by 7, Critical by 5 and adds effective damage to armoured foes. Effective damage equates to double the usual. There’s also super-effective damage that deals triple damage.

Finally, Curved Shot is the basic Bow Combat Art. It too costs 3 durability, but boosts Might by 1 and Hit rate by 30. Useful if you really need to hit an enemy. It also boosts your attack range by 1, unless they changed it.

There’s also a note that says certain weapons and Combat Arts can apply status effects on foes. This can include “stat debuff” and “poison”, which can last one turn or several turns. If one of your characters has been afflicted, you can cure them with items or the Restore spell.

In the bottom two corners, there’s some info about Hero Relics and the protagonist’s unique Hero Relic, the golden sword called the Sword of the Creator. Long story short, the Goddess bestowed blessed weapons that can only be wielded if one possesses the corresponding crest. Apparently they were given to the 10 Elites, although I think there may be other relics?

The Sword of the Creator normally has 20 uses, but you can automatically restore 5 uses by choosing to rest during a weekend. Useful if you’re out of money. It might be possible to repair it via the smithy as well, but they weren’t clear on that. Anyway, resting also restores some of your students’ Motivation, so it’s worth considering.

Finally, here’s a look at some Advanced classes! These require characters to be Level 20 or over. As a reminder, Level is not reset upon class-changing. Also, a character’s available weapons do not change for the most part, unless it’s magic (only available in magic-based classes) or gauntlets (only available in foot-based classes).

Note: Class Abilities are tied to class and disappear after changing class..

Hero (male-only)

An expert of the sword. Strangely, it’s male-only despite female Mercenaries existing in this game. Byleth is fittingly our Hero here.

Class Abilities:

  • Swordfaire – Might +5 when a sword is equipped
  • Vantage – Always attack first when under 50% HP

Fortress

A walking fortress that’s slow but makes for an indomitable wall. Leonie is the one who’s donned heavy armour.

Class Abilities:

  • Axefaire – Might +5 when an axe is equipped
  • Weight -5 – The combined weight of equipment is reduced by 5

Paladin

A well-balanced class in terms of offensive and defensive capabilities. I think that’s Ferdinand?

Class Abilities:

  • Move Again – Unit can use leftover movement after performing an action
  • Lancefaire – Might +5 when a lance is equipped
  • Terrain Resistance – Unit does not receive terrain damage

Grappler (male-only)

A gauntlet pro who’s great at dealing consecutive hits with their weapons. Like Brawler, it’s male-only. Raphael’s our handsome model.

Class Abilities:

  • Gauntletfaire – Might +5 when a gauntlet is equipped
  • Barehanded Battle – User fights with a gauntlet even if no weapon is equipped

Warlock

A master of Black Magic who can easily crumple foes with high defense. Annette is our lovely Warlock today.

Class Abilities:

  • Reasonfaire – Might +5 when black magic is equipped
  • Black Magic Use x2 – Doubles the number of uses of black magic spells

Bishop

The White Magic counterpart of the Warlock. Able to attack and assist, making it a very versatile class. Lysithea’s posing as the Bishop here.

Class Abilities:

  • White Magic Use x2 – Doubles the number of uses of white magic spells
  • White Magic Recovery +10 – White Magic recovery amount +10
  • Terrain Resistance – Unit does not receive terrain damage

That’s everything I spotted today. If we’re lucky, Famitsu may publish an online version of this article in the coming days, with much better screenshots. If that happens, please expect a follow up article!

About the Author: VincentASM
Author Website: http://serenesforest.net
  • milkes

    Thanks for the article! July is so far away..

  • Lusankya

    So two more male only classes, but none for females. What the hell, why are there exclusive classes in the first place?

    • Böser

      The Hero class is probably only exsclusive in name (like the Butler and Maid from fates) maybe there is a Heroine class, with some minor alteration (like more speed and less health)

    • Phoenix Jam

      Pegasus Knights are locked to female units

      • Lancome

        Are both flier classes available early game?

      • Lusankya

        I know, hence I wrote “why are there exclusive classes in the first case?”

    • Espiritu

      “but none for females” Research be hard! At this point, at this point, people are just fishing for reasons to be angry! Even if it means making up shit so they can say they are upset…..

      • Lancome

        Is there a way for female characters to get Swordfaire since you know no access to Hero class?

        • Espiritu

          I would say it will be like what Boser said. Just a different name with small stat differences. I don’t see them not giving swordfaire.

          • Lancome

            So likely a 2nd tier Class? Poor female Byleth though, at least Edelgard has her Axe.

      • Lusankya

        Well, there is no female only class in this update, isn’t there? Also in Fates they had no class restriction at all and we could use male Pegasus Knights, but now they’re going away from that again.

        Imho there should either be no class restriction or at least male and female units should have access to the same number of classes and should at least cover all archetypes.

        Right now it just looks like male units have plain more options available.

        • Ruri “Kuroneko” Gokō

          We don’t know that yet. And, anyway, the only classes that actually matter are the fifth tier classes, of which we don’t know any yet.

        • Espiritu

          Ur acting like IS has to tell u everything in one day! Other wise they are some evil monster….

          “Imho there should either be no class restriction or at least male and female units should have access to the same number of classes and should at least cover all archetypes.”

          Game is not even out yet! ur acting like what we know right now! Is 100% of the game, or that nothing extra will be in the game or shown at a later date! U sound like a spoiled child…

    • Ren

      Trade off for females having more same sex supports (if the leaks are 100% about this as well)?

  • nainelaine

    i hope we’ll get to glance more of the post-time skip designs before the game releases! i put down my preorder on monday finally. can’t wait!

  • Sentinel

    So Anna’s going back to her Secret Shop profession. Curious.

    I don’t mind gender-locked classes, though females really deserve more.

  • Bcardia

    I really wish IntSys would stop making the villains look so over-the-top evil to the point where it’s comical. I know the series never really had nuance and sublety in that regard, but still…
    Also, kinda weird that Byleth hasn’t changed at all in these 5 years (except for getting mint green colored hair I guess), but maybe there is some sort of justification for this.

    But other than that, I’m really excited for this game. The class costumes continue to look great, specially the ones for the female mages.

    • Mason Klaus

      I think Byleth’s appearance not changing, sans the hair, might have something to do with Sothis. This is just a guess of course since we really don’t know for certain.

    • Sentinel

      I honestly not don’t mind the obviously-evil designs so long as they at least look nice, which these do.

      They at least look cool, compared to someone like Validar in which even his design is dumb.

    • Böser

      it’ll be some kind of, hes a dragon/ chosen being and thus ages slowly nonsence. or just younger charicters changing more than older ones (more space to grow) cos it seem Felix (older looking charicter pre time skip) hasnt changed much while Bernedeta has at least brought a hair straitener

      • Ruri “Kuroneko” Gokō

        Rather than that, I think Byleth is stuck in time with Sothis for those five years. It would explain why there even is a time skip in the first place and it would also explain why they still look the same.

        • Bcardia

          Yeah, that’s probably it.

  • Mr Douche

    I am kinda impressed you translated and uploaded the info so fast. Thanks.

  • Mason Klaus

    Looks like Anna’s not playable this time. Sucks for her fans that want her to be playable but nothing can be done about it. I’m honestly neutral to the idea of her being playable since in a way she’s like Fire Emblem’s version of the anime Pokemon’s Nurse Joy and Officer Jenny (anyone whose watched Pokemon will know what I mean).

    • Ruri “Kuroneko” Gokō

      Why would she not be playable? Just because one Anna is setting up a secret store, doesn’t mean that another Anna can’t join you.

      • Mason Klaus

        Well aside from seeing her as the Secret Shop keeper, theres no other info pointing to her or one of her many “sisters” being playable. I mean its possible she’ll be playable during the War Phase but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

        • There’s also… DLC.

          • Mason Klaus

            True. It wouldn’t surprise me if IS went that route again for her, they did that in Fates and they’d likely do it again here.

    • I’m happy with this, as she was only a character in her own right in FE1. She certainly wasn’t some forced Nurse Joy merchant family before Awakening.

  • Druplesnubb

    A slight correction in that there’s no character with the crest of Macuil revealed so far.

    • Aveyn Knight

      Thanks, should be fixed now.

  • Miley Kliss

    Who would b unrecruitable from Claudes house? I can see at least one from each house besides the lord’s but none for Claude

    • Böser

      Probably Lorenz seems to be Clauds “advisor” maybe arrogant but loyal?

      • Sentinel

        Lorenz has already been shown to be recruitable.

        If Claude has a retainer of sorts that can’t be recruited, it’ll likely be Hilda.

        • Miley Kliss

          Hmm I guess she would have to fit the bill. My first thought was Lorenz as well but then we saw the footage of his recruitment requirements. If not Hilda then maybe Lystheia or Marianne but they seem unlikely.

        • Böser

          Maybe all charicters can be recruted as students but only some of those will remain by Bylith after the time skip depending on their loyalty to either side.

          (same Boser just found my old account)

          • Miley Kliss

            Just saw an comment on gamefaqs posted by Thanibomb (or however its spelt) saying Hilda is Claudes retainer. Tho I’m not saying its 100% true yet, it seems we were on the right course with our assumptions

  • Killuawatt

    I really wonder what is the number limit for recruiting students from other houses. There has to be a limit of some sort otherwise you’d just recruit nearly every student from the other houses, negating the point of even choosing one to begin with.

    • Pawn

      Well it’s limited by stats from what we’ve heard so that might be limiting enough depending on the stat requirements to recruit. Most people will want to focus their characters somewhat

      • Ruri “Kuroneko” Gokō

        Even if you don’t focus on a few specific stats and try to get everything, I highly doubt that these stats will be nearly enough to recruite even half of the students of the other houses. I would also assume that some event to to recruite them will cost you part of your stroll gauge, which would be a limiting factor as well.

    • Lancome

      I’m guessing it would be hard to recruit them on hard mode with the time limit ticking.

    • Raehan

      I would think 8 max, based on the fact that your classroom can accommodate 16 students (and maybe more if you let some die)

  • Raven

    Interesting that (so far) all of the Elite crests/descendants are in the Lions and Deer, while the Saint crests are in the Eagles.

  • Lancome

    Which house does Igrid belong to?

    • Alexios Blake

      Blue Lions

  • superdawge

    Thank you Vincent for your amazing work! Where would this fandom be without you?!

    • In the darkest pits of the Heroes sub.

  • Ghost King

    Might be wrong about this since I can’t read Japanese, but I’ve noticed that that, as far as I can recall, we’ve only seen the Hero class in relation to Byleth. Are we sure it’s male only? Is it possible it’s actually Byleth only, like how in Radiant Dawn it was an Ike exclusive class?

    Just want some undeniable confirmation here since it seems like such a odd step.